Same problem- 1 year later


#1

Last year, I posted how my to-be MIL was problematic, especially that she didn’t like how religious I was. She’s grown to like me as a person, I believe, so I think she’s moved more to “marriage” being the problem.

Well, recently she and my DH-to-be had a huge argument about our getting married at 22/23. She says we’re too young, immature, not ready, etc. In trying to argue, he couldn’t get anything more specific as a hallmark of immaturity other than age. Could someone elucidate what makes someone “immature” so that he can more effectively argue (and maybe give us a different angle to view ourselves)?

Also, what can be said about “people changing” in a marriage?

How can you explain how a Christ-centered marriage works?

Why would a mother object to a girl who brings her son closer to God? (his words, not mine)

Mostly, I am not asking these questions because I have doubts. I feel so comfortable and confident in our impending marriage because we have a very Catholic spirituality regarding marriage, sex, family life, etc. However, I’m trying to see if there’s a better way to argue, a better way to view this (or if, as I expect, she is just afraid of losing her “place” in her son’s life, cannot look outside her own priorities and experiences, and any arguments will be fruitless.)


#2

First off, I’m sorry your future MIL is being so difficult. She will be in my prayers. I also hope that once you are married, she will be accepting and not bring it up again.

I don’t know of an arguement that would be convincing enough for your MIL about age. Some people are mature and ready at 18, some not til their 30 and some are never mature enough to enter in the marriage state. But if you are working, or even going to school, becoming independent, this is also a step in that direction. However, I’d just stand firm and request that she not bring it up again because it is not going to change anything and that she respect her son as an adult as well as you. That whole baloney thing about exploring and all as a single person and waiting to get married later is all selfishness. If you happen to get married later, that’s different, but if you’re ready now, why wait?

People change all the time, but that’s the beauty of marriage - you can change together. We are always changing throughout our lives and many people have mid-life crises later on, so are we not to marry til after you’re 40 or 50?

I don’t know that bringing back answers will change her mind. Prayer, hopefully, will. I would say the best route would be to change the subject or have your FI basically tell her that this is going to happen, so she can either be happy and have a good relationship with you both, or she can be negative and slowly chisel away a great relationship with you both. God bless! I hope this helps!


#3

Is MIL providing financial support to her son? Tuition, etc.?


#4

I personally think that the biggest problem is that you and your intended are arguing with her in the attempt to convince her.

Just stop.

While her approval would be nice it is not necessary. If either of you cannot bring yourself to marry without convincing her then I suspect there’s a good chance you will be waiting a LONG time. Arguing (in the sense of a logical debate) can only work if your MIL-to-be has some rational, impersonal reasons why you shouldn’t marry. I don’t think that’s likely. She doesn’t WANT you to marry (now). Unless she thinks especially highly of people who argue well I can’t see how arguing will change what she wants.

I suggest you go ahead and cheerfully make your plans without her approval. If she tries to talk you out of anything just don’t respond beyond a polite acknowledgment that you’ve heard her thoughts. While that might upset her even more in the short run it is far more likely to win her approval in the long run. It’s a lot easier than arguing, too.

Pick a date, time, and location then let your future MIL know. Hopefully she will want to be involved in the festivities and will come around. But if she doesn’t, just remember that you and your husband are not entitled to her approval; it is hers to give or withhold as she sees fit.


#5

No, we both have steady salaries. We’re both Ensigns in the Navy.


#6

Then be loving and kind to the mother/futer MIL, say “thank you for your concern” and change the subject. Treat her exactly as you want to be treated when you are a MIL someday.

Pray for her, and show her Christ’s love.


#7

You might like the novel, Stepping Heavenward. The main character has difficult inlaws who end up helping her to grow in sanctity.

God Bless.


#8

Well… obviously, I don’t know your future MIL, but I think this kinda explains it, and perhaps explains why she can’t really articulate a more concrete reason for her opposition.

She has a problem with religion. Lots of people do. Our media and culture have done an excellent job in convincing people that people who are religious are nutcases. My wife freaked out when I got religious for that reason.

The thing is, religious bigotry is hard to state outright (as are most bigotries), so there is usually another excuse put forward that doesn’t sound quite right.

I’m not exactly sure how you overcome this. I see the same basic attitude in my wife’s family – this real distaste and contempt for religious. And it’s not isolated to them.

I’d say pray and live a life faithful to Christ. You may never gain your MIL’s approval, but that’s not the one whose approval you need anyway.


#9

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